Lanier leads Bears to season opening win

Published 11:56 pm Friday, August 26, 2011

Jimmie Lanier rushed for 115 yards in Billingsley's win Friday at Dallas County.

By Robert Hudson | Selma Times-Journal

In a game plagued by mistakes from both teams, it was the Billingsley Bears who made the fewest Friday as they defeated the Dallas County Hornets 28-14.

Despite five fumbles, two of which they lost, the Bears relied on a strong running attack led by tailback Jimmie Lanier Jr., who racked up 115 yards and one touchdown on 24 carries.

“My team stepped up,” Lanier Jr. said. “I just worked hard with my team. We’re the underdogs, so we work hard every day in practice.”

Lanier also returned an interception for a touchdown in the fourth quarter of the season opener.

Billingsley head coach Tyson McLean said he’s happy his team got the win, despite all the mistakes.

“Overall, I’m pretty well pleased with the effort,” McLean said. “There are some things we need to go back next week and correct, but overall, I’m happy for the win.”

The Bears set the tone for the entire game on the first drive with a 14-play, 73-yard drive capped off by a 2-yard touchdown as they recovered their own fumble in the end zone. The Bears added a 2-point conversion to make the score 8-0 with 5:25 left in the first quarter.

Dallas County entered the game with 21 new starters and their youth showed on their first play as they opened with a 5-yard encroachment penalty.

Three play’s later the Hornets fumbled a handoff and Billingsley recovered.

7 plays later, Lanier ran it in for a 2-yard touchdown. The Bears missed the 2-point conversion to make it 14-0 with 0:30 left in the first.

The Hornets showed signs of life in the third when quarterback Sean Van Diver hit a streaking wide receiver who fumbled after the catch, but the Hornets recovered to put them in the red zone.

Two plays later, Van Diver hit Justin Moreland for an 11-yard touchdown.

But the mistakes were too much for the Hornets, as they were hurt by penalties and four turnovers.